Hire a Professional InterventionistFirst and foremost, hire an addiction specialist to help guide you through the intervention process. Interventionists specialize in interventions as well as crisis de-escalation. Their job is not only to help you plan an effective intervention but to make sure your intervention goes smoothly. These individuals are often counselors, social workers, or mental health professionals who have spent years dealing with people who are reluctant to seek help. They are an integral part of the intervention process. You should never attempt to host an intervention without a professional by your side.
Decide Who is Going to Be Part of the InterventionAfter hiring a professional, the next step required in planning an intervention is deciding who all are going to participate. Intervention groups usually consist of 4-5 people who are the closest to the afflicted individual. These group members may be friends, family members, co-workers, spouses, and even teenage or adult children. Think of who means the most to your struggling loved one as well as who has been affected the most by your loved one’s intervention. You want to choose people who are supportive of your addicted loved one but also those who are able to set firm boundaries with them. You should probably avoid involving young children or people who have a bad relationship with your loved one. After all, the point of an intervention is to help — not to cause any harm. You may have questions about whether or not involving a certain person(s) is a good idea. Each family is different and has its own dynamics, so when doubtful, it is best to consult with the interventionist you have hired.
Plan What Everyone Wants to Say During The InterventionNow that everyone is on board and is ready to help convince your loved one to go to rehab, it’s time for everyone to plan out exactly what they want to say. It is a good idea to have each group member write down what they plan to say on a notecard so they don’t leave anything out. While planning what you want to say during the intervention, focus on bringing to light issues that have affected you personally. Explain to your struggling loved one how their addiction has affected you, how it made you feel, and why you are so concerned. Focus on using “I” statements rather than placing blame on your loved one. End your share by offering your unconditional love and support.
Rehearse and RepeatYou’ve figured out what you’d like to say, but the preparations don’t end there. Now, it is time to do a run-through of your intervention. You and members of the group will take turns sharing what you’ve come up with. You will provide each other with feedback so each member can perfect his or her share. The addiction specialist that you’ve hired will also review your notecards, provide feedback, and help you make any necessary adjustments that will make the intervention as successful as possible. After rehearsing and making edits to what you are going to say, it’s time to repeat the process once more to make sure everyone is fully prepared.
Pick a Day, Time, and LocationNext, you and the group should pick a day, time, and location to host the intervention. It’s best to pick a day and time when all members are off work and have no other commitments. You must also consider the schedule of your addicted loved one. If you know he or she will be intoxicated after 5 P.M., consider hosting the intervention early in the morning when he or she is more clear-headed. As far as the location goes, it’s best to do this somewhere that is discreet, quiet, and away from distractions. A person’s home or backyard is a suitable option.
Make Arrangements With a Nearby Rehab CenterAnother important part of planning an intervention involves figuring out where you want to send your loved one to rehab. You may consult with their insurance provider or your addiction specialist to choose the best rehab. Check with the treatment provider you prefer to make sure they have open beds and that they are prepared to admit your loved one on the day of your intervention.
Practice Self-CareLastly, it’s vital that you and each member of your intervention group practice self-care both before and after holding the intervention. Dealing with an addicted loved one isn’t easy and it can put a lot of pressure on everyone involved. Each of you needs to make sure you are getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, and taking time to relax and de-stress from all of your responsibilities in life. Remember, you can’t help your addicted loved one unless you are healthy yourself.
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